Apparently, January 5-11 is Women's Self Empowerment Week. Who knew? Entertainment Weekly's Whitney Pastorek, for one. She winkingly writes:
"You should feel free to be as empowered as you wish, because this is the one week of the year in which we are encouraged to do so!" Pastorek has chosen Lily Allen as her WS-EW mascot, "Because she curses like a really smart sailor. Because she suffered true tragedy quietly, but suffers small indignities as loud as she can. Because she hates Perez."
But seriously: Since there's barely any media coverage, no lapel ribbons and virtually zero awareness of Women's Self-Empowerment Week, it's up to you to figure out how to celebrate. And to ask yourself: Do we even need a Women's Self-Empowerment Week? Doesn't its very existence assume that women are not taking charge of their own lives and making decisions for themselves? And! Is there something patronizing about the concept of a week for "self-empowered" women? Pastorek groans, "I hate the idea that as women we need to tiptoe up to our strength like a heavy barbell and be condescendingly applauded when we lift it."
And what if you've never thought of women as anything but empowered? Maybe your grandmother was tough as nails, your mom could bake, wrangle kids and make snap-decisions about real estate and fashion without mussing her Cher hair and hip-hugging bell-bottoms, and your sister plays guitar and breaks hearts with ease. Maybe to you, women and power are like peanut butter and jelly and you can't imagine one without the other. Does that mean you can't "celebrate" this very special week? And what's the appropriate way to enjoy WS-EW? Suggestions welcome.